Leader of the Pack: Lady Cats in driver's seat of 11-4A golf, while SSHS boys must rely on Gideon

From Staff Reports

April 6, 2007 - MOUNT PLEASANT - The Sulphur Springs girls remained firmly in the driver's seat of the District 11-4A golf race on Thursday, expanding their lead to insurmountable proportions.

The SSHS boys, meanwhile, moved up two rungs in the standings, but face an unlikely climb to the regional tournament except for steadfast Dustin Gideon.

That's the way the second round of the 11-4A tournament, played at Mount Pleasant Country Club, shook out. The third and final round is scheduled for Oak Grove Golf Club in Texarkana on Tuesday.

Boys

Gideon, a senior who has qualified for the regional tournament each of his first three years, shot the day's second-lowest score, a 1-over par 73, to remain in second place in the individual standings.

With the SSHS team in fourth place and needing to make up 50 strokes over the final 18 holes to get into the second and final regional-qualifying position, it appears Gideon is the best hope for a Wildcat to advance.

He followed last week's round of 72 at Paris Golf Club with a 73 yesterday for a 145 two-round total. He trails medalist leader Zack Fischer of Texas High by six strokes after Fischer turned in a 1-under 71 on Thursday.

Gideon must finish in the top six and be one of the top two individuals not on a qualifying team to advance to regional. He leads Texas High's Conner Ribble by one stroke, Paris' Stuart Smallwood by three, and North Lamar's Jay Cox and Texas High's Cabe Preiskorn by five strokes.

SSHS coach Doug Evans said Gideon's short game was at a premium at Mount Pleasant.

"Dustin wasn't hitting the ball as well as he had in the past two-to-three weeks, but he found a way to score," Evans said. "He putted well, and his short game was really saving him.

"It's not that he was hitting the ball poorly, but he wasn't as crisp and on-line as he had been. But, he still found a way to finish with a good score, which is the sign of a good golfer."

As a team, the Wildcats shot a 346, which combined with their first-round score of 339 gave them a 685 total. Texas High leads the district with a 586, followed by North Lamar in second at 636 and Lindale in third at 641.

Sulphur Springs was able to leapfrog two other teams to put themselves in fourth.

Freshman Adam Perry shot an 89 to give him a two-round score of 173, while senior Robby Moore and freshman Cort Walker both carded 92s on Thursday. Moore has a 181 total and Walker has a 186. Hesston Taylor finished with a 107 (201 total).

"Compared to last week, we did better than the other teams as far as our team scores," Evans said of the tougher course. "But, we didn't keep the ball in play well enough.

"This course demands you play target golf. You can get into trouble very easily, and that's what happened. It wasn't any one thing."

While the Wildcats are realistically out of the running for a regional team berth, they need to play well on Tuesday to stay in fourth. North Lamar's B team, Paris and Mount Pleasant are all within six strokes of SSHS.

The SSHS B team was led Tuesday by Price Orwosky, who carded a 101, followed by Josh Willis with a 102 and Cole Cable with a 111.

Girls

The Lady Cats took the drama out of the district race by shooting 48 strokes better than second-place Lindale to extend their lead to almost 100 strokes.

Sulphur Springs shot a 378 to finish with a 739 two-round total, which is 95 strokes better than second-place Lindale, which in turn has a 100-stroke lead over third-place North Lamar.

SSHS senior Whitney McDaniel shot an 89 on Thursday to step ahead of teammate Britney Cheatham into first place in the individual standings. The pair were tied atop the leaderboard after the first round, but Cheatham came in three strokes behind McDaniel at Mount Pleasant with a 92.

Senior Kylie Littlefield stayed in third in the medalist standings after carding a 95. Meanwhile, sophomore Kaitlyn Potts (102) and freshman Miranda Conway (107) remained in the top 10 in the district.

The Lady Cats are headed easily for the regional tournament in two weeks.

"Hopefully there won't be a whole lot of drama next week in that final round," said SSHS coach Rahn Smith. "We're going to use it as a fine-tuning for regional."

He said some of the girls weren't satisfied with their scores, but the Mount Pleasant course presented a challenge for them.

"There was water on every single hole, and that came into play on the back nine," Smith explained. "This course is all about course management. You can't just take out your driver on every hole and hit away.

"Considering some of the adversity they faced, they held it together pretty well."

District 11-4A

Second Round

Mount Pleasant Country Club

Par 72

BOYS

Team - 1. Texas High "A" 285-301-586; 2. North Lamar "A" 307-329-636; 3. Lindale "A" 315-326-641; 4. Sulphur Springs "A" 339-346-685; 5. North Lamar "B" 328-359-687; 6. Paris "A" 331-357-688; 7. Mount Pleasant "A" 341-350-691; 8. Texas High "B" 347-368-715; 9. Paris "B" 347-375-722; 10. Mount Pleasant "B" 402-388-790; 11. Lindale "B" 382-426-813; 12. Sulphur Springs "B" 400-427-827.

Individual Top 6 - 1. Zack Fischer, Texas High "A", 68-71-139; 2. Dustin Gideon, Sulphur Springs "A", 72-73-145; 3. Conner Ribble, Texas High "A", 72-74-146; 4. Stuart Smallwood, Paris "A", 72-76-148; 5. Jay Cox, North Lamar "A", 74-76-150; 5. Cabe Prieskorn, Texas High "A", 73-77-150; 6. Chris Treadway, Texas High "A", 72-79-151.

Sulphur Springs "A" - Dustin Gideon 72-73-145; Adam Perry 84-89-173; Robby Moore 89-92-181; Cort Walker 94-92-186; Hesston Taylor 94-107-201.

Sulphur Springs "B" - Josh Willis 95-102-197; Price Orwosky 99-101-200; Cole Cable 99-111-210; Lance Knotts 107-127-234; John Holland 109-113-222; Medalist: Josh Gaines 116-111-227.

GIRLS

Team - 1. Sulphur Springs "A" 361-378-739; 2. Lindale 409-425-834; 3. North Lamar 934; 4. Texas High 491-473-964.

Sulphur Springs "A" - Whitney McDaniel 84-89-173; Britney Cheatham 84-92-176; Kylie Littlefield 88-95-183; Kaitlyn Potts 105-102-207; Miranda Conway 107-107-214.

Sulphur Springs "B" - Jandi Lawrence 128-128-256; Christa Wilks 117-140-257; Kaylie Coke 143-147-290; Rachel Johnson 128-DNP; Meentra Mirokotwichikarn 132-DNP; Medalists: Whitney Morgan 116-125-241; Steffe Wegenast 133-127-260.

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